Two years ago, the National Party repealed democracy in Canterbury, replacing the elected Canterbury Regional Council with a clique of unelected dictators. Last night, Labour finally managed to bring a bill to reverse that situation and force immediate elections for ECan to the floor of the House.
National, ACT, Peter Dunne and the Maori Party voted it down.
National's vote isn't really so surprising. They've consistently shown that their default solution to any problem is dictatorship, and they're not going to surrender power back to the people until that dictatorship has irreversibly given away the regions water to their farmer-cronies. Banks and Dunne are just sock-puppets. But the Maori Party? What do they have against the people of Canterbury? And do they really think that "Maori should have guaranteed political representation while the people of Canterbury should have none" is a sustainable position?
I am, as usual, disgusted. This is a fundamental democratic right. Our Parliament has just voted against it, for the second time. They're really not showing themselves to be good guardians of our democracy, and its another argument for an enforceable Bill of Rights to keep them in line.
Meanwhile, think about this: democratic means to restore democracy in Canterbury have just failed. What option does that leave now?